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North By Northwest: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Soundtrack

4.7 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Soundtrack, June 20, 1995
$14.97
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Overture
  2. The Streets (Outtake)
  3. It's A Most Unusual Day
  4. Kidnapped
  5. The Door
  6. Cheers
  7. The Wild Ride
  8. Car Crash
  9. The Return
  10. Two Dollars
  11. Rosalie
  12. In The Still Of The Night
  13. The Elevator
  14. The U.N.
  15. Information Desk
  16. The Knife
  17. Fashion Show
  18. Interlude
  19. Detectives
  20. Conversation Piece
  21. Duo
  22. The Station
  23. The Phone Booth
  24. Farewell
  25. The Crash
  26. Hotel Lobby
  27. The Reunion
  28. Goodbye
  29. The Question
  30. The Pad & Pencil
  31. The Auction
  32. The Police
  33. The Airport
  34. The Cafeteria
  35. The Shooting
  36. The Forest
  37. Flight
  38. The Ledge
  39. The House
  40. The Balcony
  41. The Match Box
  42. The Message
  43. The T.V.
  44. The Airplane
  45. The Gates
  46. The Stone Faces
  47. The Ridge
  48. On The Rocks
  49. The Cliff
  50. Finale


Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 20, 1995)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Rhino
  • Run Time: 136 minutes
  • ASIN: B0000033L8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #174,817 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By James Luckard on November 25, 2003
Format: Audio CD
The flaws on this disc are explained very clearly in the enclosed booklet. Out of 50 tracks, a mere five were on a reel that was nearly destroyed when they found it. The tragedy is that they include all the appearances of the main "North By Northwest" fandango theme in "Overture," "The Wild Ride," "On The Rocks" and "Finale." The other damaged track is a minor one, "Goodbye."
As a collector, it's true, this is the CD to buy, it's the original, complete score, including outtakes and source music, that is, the music being played by sources like radios within the world of the movie. And the majority of it sounds great.
That said, if you're buying it, then chances are you're mainly interested in the fandango theme, one of the most unforgettable in cinema. A few people have said they don't notice the audio flaws. If that's the case, then I'm happy for them, but they probably don't know the music that well, because if you're at all familiar with it, you'll notice whole instruments faded almost to nothing. These tracks sound like they're on a radio halfway between stations.
Don't despair, however, because there is a solution. The DVD of the film includes an isolated score of the film. I don't know what source they used for the DVD, which was made in 2000, but it was clearly unavailable to the makers of this CD in 1995. The tracks which are flawed on the CD sound pristine on the DVD, as if recorded yesterday. If you want to hear the fandango theme in all its sonic glory, pick up the DVD, it's actually cheaper than the album anyway.
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Format: Audio CD
Well, someone has finally plugged one of the worst holes in the selection of available soundtracks- "North by Northwest". We've had quite a few renditions of Bernard Herrmann's overture for the film, and the Laurie Johnson-conducted re-creation for Varese Sarabande (a decent version, if a shade too politely played). But not until now have we had what NXNW buffs have lusted after- the whole soundtrack, taken right off the 1959 MGM master tapes. And it's incredible! You get all 48 cues for the movie, and two more that were recorded, but cut from the film. You even get four tracks of source cues- music not by Herrmann that was meant as background. "Rosalie", "In The Still of the Night", and "It's a Most Unusual Day" are adept re-creations of the Palm Court orchestra at the Plaza Hotel, and "Fashion Show" is the Muzak heard during Cary Grant's dinner with Eva Marie Saint on the 20th Century Limited. As a bonus, "Fashion Show" is revealed in the liner notes as being by Andre Previn and having been originally written for 1957's "Designing Woman".
This CD version has some sonic limitations; the master tapes were in such bad shape they could be played only one last time. Fortunately, some cleaning up and restoration was possible, and the result sounds as good as anyone has a right to expect from such badly deteriorated source material- in fact, quite a bit better. What few glitches remain should serve as a warning to movie mavens everywhere; if we don't demand- long, loud and often- that studios take care of our movie heritage, it is GONNA disappear.
If you want to hear "North by Northwest's" score in as close to first-day condition as possible, this is the CD to have.
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By A Customer on February 5, 1999
Format: Audio CD
This CD is virtually perfect in every respect. First, you get a massive booklet, which maps out the film in detail and relates it to the 50 tracks on the CD. Then you get a soundtrack which has never before been released - why goodness knows. But best of all, someone has really thought about this music. Dividing the music into the scenes of the film is something which modern soundtracks should learn from. However, the true masterstroke is the quality of the recordings - both the original conception, which perfectly captures the tension, romance and comedy of the film; and in the remastering. It's claimed in the liner notes that some of the tracks have suffered bad damage, but the average listener will not notice any deterioration. The most anyone will detect is probably a slight variation in tone.
This CD is a classic release, and sets a standard which many will yearn to follow. One day, in the ordinary cycle of life, we will have a great film composer who will compose works to rival the best of John Barry, Henry Mancini and John Williams. When asked for their inspiration, he or she will probably reply, "I heard the original version of 'North by Northwest', and I knew then that I wanted to write music like that." Nothing more needs to be said.
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By J B on January 19, 2003
Format: Audio CD
I love "North by Northwest" and am very happy to own the soundtrack - I think the music is wonderful.
I was a bit unsure about buying this one because some of the other reviews seemed to hint that this recording was flawed, imperfect, or otherwise bad. It's not at all. DON'T get the re-recording - there is nothing wrong with this one, so why not have the original, better version?
I found the music much sharper and much less static than the reviews implied, and haven't heard any serious wavering, fuzziness, or anything. I recommend this very highly. If you are a fan of Hitchcock, Cary Grant, or just good music, get this. You will love it.
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